Frequently Asked Questions

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County Business Patterns: What is the source of the data?

County Business Patterns (CBP) and ZIP Code Business Patterns (ZBP) basic data items are extracted from the Business Register (BR), a database of all known single and multi-establishment companies maintained by the U.S. Census Bureau. The BR contains the most complete, current, and consistent data for business establishments. The annual Company Organization Survey provides individual establishment data for multi-establishment companies. Data for single-establishment companies are obtained from various Census Bureau programs, such as the Economic Census (conducted every five years), the Annual Survey of Manufactures and Current Business Surveys, as well as from administrative records from the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), the Social Security Administration (SSA), and the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS).

CBP data are processed through various automated and analytical edits to remove anomalies, validate geographic coding, addresses, and industry classification. For more information on industry and geography classification, refer to the How the data are collected page. Noise infusion methodology is applied to protect individual business establishments from disclosure. Noise infusion was first applied to CBP data in 2007. Prior to 2007, data were protected using the complementary cell suppression method.

Keywords: CBP


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